During their “walk-a-days,” the city council members worked along side caregiver, assisting with many of their duties. We interviewed the council members, caregivers and clients about the need for long-term care and how it can make a difference in the lives of millions of clients who rely on critical services.
In Washington State, the amount of people needing homecare will increase in future years, with the number of seniors doubling to 1.5 million in the next 15 years. In response to the increasing need for homecare in Washington State and throughout the country, Seattle City Council members Nick Licata and Mike O’Brien are supporting the Caring Across Generations Resolution that addresses the lack of affordable quality care options for the elderly and people with disability, and the need to life caregivers out of poverty.
The Caring Across Generations Resolution was passed, making Seattle the first city in the country to pass local legislation around the issue of protecting critical services for our most vulnerable: people with disabilities and older Americans.
Walking a day in a caregiver’s shoes: ‘At home, a caregiver allows you to have one on one care. It’s freedom in a way.’
Home is what sustains Greg Majesky, a Seattle resident and quadriplegic who needs assistance in many of his everyday activities. Lawrence Chandler, a homecare provider and SEIU Healthcare 775NW member has cared for Majesky since 2008. Having a stable caregiver has improved his quality of life, says Majesky.
On June 5, Seattle City Council Member Mike O’Brien, walked a day in Lawrence Chandler’s shoes to shed light on the growing need in the Seattle area for homecare programs. He is joining a movement of policy makers, community activists, clients and caregivers who are advocating for dignity, respect and freedom for our seniors and people with disabilities and those who work hard to care for them.
City Council Member O’Brien visited Majesky’s home, arriving on bicycle despite the rain, to accompany Chandler in many of the tasks he performs everyday as a caregiver. From fixing a cup of tea, preparing breakfast, doing the dishes, administering medication, assisting Majesky in transferring out of his bed to his wheelchair to preparing Majesky for his shower that he gets three times a week.
Putting the spotlight on the growing care crisis in America, Seattle City Council Member Nick Licata walked in the shoes of Janet Rodriguez – a home care provider and SEIU Healthcare 775NW member. During his “walk-a-day,” Mr. Licata worked along side Janet, assisting with many of her duties as a caregiver.
Janet has provided care for the same Seattle client for more than 15-years, and faces many challenges due to lack of support for quality long-term care.